SEATTLE, Washington — The Rohingya are a persecuted Muslim minority ethnic group from the Rakhine state on the west coast of Myanmar. Due to the extensive persecution of the Rohingya by the Myanmar government, U.N. Secretary-General, António Guterres, describes the ethnic group as “one of, if not the most discriminated people in the world.” Rohingya women, in particular, face health concerns due to the displacements and persecutions.
Rohingya Persecutions in Myanmar
Over the past several years, the persecution of the Rohingya gained significant international attention due to the most recent wave of violence in 2017. Nevertheless, the oppression of the Rohingya is not a new phenomenon and the Myanmar government has carried out violence against the group for decades.
As stateless people at constant risk of persecution, many Rohingya have fled to neighboring countries to seek refuge. Receiving countries include India, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Malaysia but Bangladesh receives more Rohingya refugees than all other countries combined. Located immediately to the west of Myanmar, the Bangladeshi region of Cox’s Bazar hosts about 860,000 Rohingya in various refugee camps. In fact, the largest refugee camp in the world is a Rohingya refugee camp located in this region in Bangladesh.
General Health Concerns
Due to the group’s statelessness and marginalization, the Rohingya face many obstacles in receiving medical care both within and outside of Myanmar. Since the Myanmar government does not grant the Rohingya citizenship, the state also denies the group access to state-sponsored healthcare.
In Bangladesh, due to the poor conditions and overcrowding within the refugee camps, Rohingya experience a myriad of health problems. Many of these health risks stem from insufficient water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services.
Nov 24, 2020Cox’s Bazar – Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the risk of Gender-based Violence (GBV) for Rohingya and Bangladeshi women and girls already was alarmingly high in Cox´s Bazar, Bangladesh. Since the onset of COVID-19, evidence suggests there has been a surge in rates of intimate partner and domestic violence in both Rohingya and host communities. Due to mobility restrictions […]
Nov 19, 2020